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Tessa Jowell remembered at Southwark memorial service

A service of thanksgiving for the life and work of Tessa Jowell has been held at Southwark Cathedral.

Tessa Jowell remembered at Southwark memorial service
The Bishop of Southwark and Mayor of London Sadiq Khan
Tessa Jowell remembered at Southwark memorial service
Tony Blair outside Southwark Cathedral

Family members were joined by colleagues from government, the Labour Party and charities on Thursday morning.

The Queen was represented and three former prime ministers including David Cameron were present.

As the MP for the Southwark seat of Dulwich and West Norwood from 1992 to 2015, former cabinet minister Baroness Jowell was a familiar figure on civic occasions held at the cathedral and elsewhere.

A film featuring family contributions made by television producer Dominic Mirghella and film producer Ruth Sewell was run whilst the congregation gathered.

The service, led by Sub Dean Michael Rawson in the presence of Bishop of Southwark The Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, opened with the singing of Jerusalem.

Those giving tributes included Southwark Council Leader Peter John, former prime minister Tony Blair and Tessa Jowell's successor Helen Hayes MP who said that it was Tessa who persuaded Tony Blair to bid for the Olympics.

Prebendary Rose Hudson-Wilkin, chaplain to the Speaker, was the preacher.

Lambeth Council leader Lib Peck read the first lesson.

Earlier in the day it was announced that a walkway in the Olympic Park will be named in memory of former Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell who helped win the 2012 Games for Britain.

"Tessa Jowell was full of kindness and generosity, and did more than anybody to bring the 2012 Games and its legacy to London," said London Mayor Sadiq Khan who was at the service.

"It is absolutely right and fitting that the Olympic Park's most popular walkway is named in her honour."

Before the service, former prime minister Gordon Brown who attended with his wife Sarah said: "Today we remember and honour the courageous Tessa Jowell who did so much for so many good causes."

Among the thousand strong congregation was the Speaker of the House of Commons John Bercow, Lord Speaker of the House of Lords Lord Fowler, Mayor of Southwark Catherine Rose, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham, former foreign secretary Jack Straw, former home secretary David Blunkett, LSE Professor of local government Tony Travers, Streatham MP and ex Southwark Cathedral choirboy Chuka Umunna, former Labour Leader Ed Miliband MP, Camberwell & Peckham MP Harriet Harman, Sir Simon Hughes, former Liberal Democrat Southwark Council leader Nick Stanton and television presenter Alan Yentob.

The collection is being sent to Act for Cancer Foundation set up in Tessa Jowell's memory.

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